Google has just announced that it is buying a portable company Fitbit for $ 2.1 billion. In a blog post announcing the news, Google SVP of devices and services Rick Osterloh said that the Fitbit acquisition is "an opportunity to invest even more in the Wear OS, as well as introducing Made by Google portable devices into the market."
news comes just days after a report by Reuters which claimed that Google was in talks to buy the popular fitness company.
Under the agreement, Fitbit will become a member of Google itself. (It is similar to the current situation with Nest, which is completely under Google now, compared to when Alphabet originally bought the smart home company, but left it as a separate division under the corporate structure.)
According to a separate press release issued by Fitbit, the company will continue to take privacy and health data seriously, and note that "Fitbit health and wellness data will not be used for Google ads."
The acquisition makes a lot of sense: Google has spent many years trying (and largely unable) to break into the wearable market with the Wear OS platform, but it has struggled to make a real impact.
Fitbit & # 39; s hardware notch has always been good, giving Google a much stronger foundation to build on for future Android integrated laptops. And the company's strong focus on fitness tracking can naturally integrate into Google's existing Google Fit apps, offering Google a solid alternative to Apple Watch's deep fitness tracking integration with the iPhone.
On the flip side, Google's software capabilities and broad developer support can help Fitbit's smart watches like Versa get a little smarter, alongside the deeper software integration with Android that a closer relationship can offer.
The Fitbit acquisition isn't the only recent investment Google has made in fitness-focused wearable clothing, either: Back in January, the company spent $ 40 million to buy some unknown Fossil smartwatch technology based on technology Fossil acquired when it bought portable manufacturer Misfit back in 2015.